Sandra Loree (Petersen) Langley of Lone Pine passed quietly on the afternoon of Thursday, Jan. 8 at Renown Hospital in Reno.
Sandy is survived by her husband, Christopher Langley; and by her brothers, Mark Petersen, of Fairfield and Steve Petersen of Malibu. She is also survived by her sons and their families, Simon Langley and wife Wendy of Chico and Matthew Langley and wife Juliana of Sebastopol; and three adoring granddaughters, Alexandra, Caroline and Scarlett.
She was preceded in death by her father and mother, Peter and Anita Petersen.
Born on April 7, 1943 in Healdsburg, Sandy grew up in Sonoma and Mendocino counties. She graduated from Point Arena High School in Point Arena in 1961, and she attended college at Santa Rosa Junior College and Sonoma State University. She received a degree in English from SSU as a member of the college's inaugural class.
Shortly upon graduating from college, Sandy enlisted in the Peace Corps and traveled to Austin, Texas for training. It was in Austin that she would meet her eventual husband of 46 years, Christopher Langley. The pair were both stationed in Iran during their Peace Corps service. Sandy reveled in telling stories of her adventures in Iran all of her life. The couple married in New York City on Aug. 8, 1968, shortly after returning to the United States. Christopher relocated from his native New York to join his new bride in California.
Lifelong educators, Sandy and Chris soon found themselves teaching elementary school in a remote northern California mining town called New Idria. Their tenure there was short-lived, however, as the mine closed and the town became deserted in 1972. This led them to seek out jobs with the Lone Pine Unified School District. Sandy taught the primary grades at Olancha School from 1972- 1977, and in various grade levels at Lo-Inyo Elementary from 1977-2001. In her retirement, she served as a member of the LPUSD Board of Trustees for several years. To say that Mrs. Langley had a significantly positive impact on the youth of Lone Pine and their families would be a gross understatement. Her influence went beyond the classroom, and many of her students remained lifelong friends.
Sandy had a passion for reading, collecting thousands of books over her lifetime and rereading hundreds of her most beloved novels time and time again. She also adored her beloved Los Angeles Dodgers, prompting her and Chris to make multiple visits to Spring Training in Arizona in recent years. Those who knew Sandy know she also had a flair for the dramatic, and the community was treated to many of her performances over the years as a member of the Southern Inyo Community Theater and in Lone Pine's fabled Jabberwocky productions. Perhaps her most notable role was as the voice of the man-eating plant, "Audrey Two" in the SICT production of Little Shop of Horrors.
Sandy imparted many pearls of wisdom to members of her family and her community over the years. She approached people with an open mind, an open, loving heart and a generous spirit that never stopped giving.
She will be memorialized at a service in Lone Pine at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 24 at the Lone Pine reservation's tribal gymnasium.
Published in Inyo Register on Jan. 17, 2015
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